Just before this Christmas (20.12.) we decided to take advantage of good conditions in Tatras and to make some nice winter ascent. Our choice fell on the main couloir in the south-west face of Javorový štít (2418 m). This couloir isn't particularly steep - 50-55° at the beginning, middle and upper section up to 45°, but Javorový štít is one of the best view point in Tatras, and we haven't been on this summit before, so the decision was unanimous.
NW and SE summit of Javorový štít with marked route of ascent from Zbojnický spád via main couloir.
Descent route: eastern couloir falling to Ostrý kotol (35-45°).
First ascent: K.L.Horn, J.Serényi, 26.8.1911
First winter ascent: S.K.Zaremba, 29.12.1930
First ski descent: V.Tatarka, 6.4.1986
We started 21:15 from Starý Smokovec and we reached Zbojnická chata (1960 m) around 01:30. Since the night wasn't too cold, we decided to sleep on the terrace of this hut, under the bright and starry sky. From Zbojnická chata just follow the yellow marked trail heading in the direction of Priečne sedlo Pass (2352 m) until you reach so called Zbojnický spád under the SW face of Javorový štít.
The main couloir is leading to Javorová štrbina Pass. In fact, there are two parallel couloirs, the left one deeper and marking our route of ascent. Overall difficulty depends on the snow condition. If there is a poor snow covering, you will have mixed pitches (rock and ice) here, on the other hand, especially after heavy snow falls, beware of the avalanches falling from huge summit plateau. We've encountered a very good, almost Spring-like, conditions, with a hard snow and only few sections which included rock and ice climbing. In the first section of the couloir there are two small rock steps.
Mixed climbing in the main couloir
Approaching the snow balcony leading to the easier part of the couloir
After crossing the second one, there is a short traverse to the left into the easier part of this ascent.
On the snow balcony in the middle of the couloir. Slavkovský štít in the background
The couloir here is wider and there are no other obstacles.
Middle section of the main couloir
Once being in Javorová štrbina you have to cross the summit plateau (similar to the one on Baranie rohy) and then you can easily reach the main, SE, summit of Javorový štít. The panorama view from the summit is overwhelming and you can see all the main Tatra peaks in full view. However the most formidable view is directly beneath your feet, into the north aspects of Javorový múr (400 m high wall with some serious winter routes).
We choosed eastern couloir for the descent, because it's the easiest route down (35-45°). The starting point is a saddle between Pravá veža and Javorový štít. You can easily descent from here to Ostrý kotol, and to the yellow marked trail leading from Priečne sedlo to Zbojnická chata.
Descending via Eastern couloir into Ostrý kotol
Crampons, ice axe (recommended combination - one climbing ice axe, and one tourist ice axe), rope (when climbing on ice), slings
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